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DiakoniaRe-Interpreting the Ancient Sources$
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John N Collins

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195396027

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195396027.001.0001

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The Servant Son of Man

The Servant Son of Man

Chapter:
(p.46) 2. The Servant Son of Man
Source:
Diakonia
Author(s):

John N. Collins

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195396027.003.0002

How confident can we be that the modern notion called “diakonia” corresponds to a notion entertained by early Christians? The best way to approach this question is to go to the only point in the early tradition where they have written expressly of Jesus as “serving”. At this point expert opinion should crystallize, and we can hope to arrive at an authentically Christian view of the service of Jesus. This chapter examines the various approaches to the interpretation of Mark 10:45 and its mention of the phrae “to serve”. The majority of writers work on the assumption that Mark's verb means in a quite general way “to serve” and that this service is directed either to one's fellow (the first, fifth, sixth, and seventh sections) or to God (the tenth section). Given the lack of consensus among commentators as to what the service of the Son of man consists in, we have reason enough to doubt that his service is the kind comprehended under the modern notion of “diakonia”.

Keywords:   Jesus, Christians, diakonia, service, God, Mark 10:45

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